PSL 2024: Lahore Qalandars lose fifth match in a row

Published February 25, 2024
Peshawar Zalmi’s Babar Azam plays a shot during the Pakistan Super League (PSL) Twenty20 cricket match between Peshawar Zalmi and Lahore Qalandars at the Gaddafi Cricket Stadium in Lahore on February 25. — AFP
Peshawar Zalmi’s Babar Azam plays a shot during the Pakistan Super League (PSL) Twenty20 cricket match between Peshawar Zalmi and Lahore Qalandars at the Gaddafi Cricket Stadium in Lahore on February 25. — AFP

Peshawar Zalmi handed Lahore Qalandars their fifth consecutive defeat of the ongoing Pakistan Super League (PSL) on Sunday despite the fireworks from the latter’s Rassie van der Dussen, who scored a brilliant hundred.

In the end, Lahore fell short by 8 runs while chasing 212 as Peshawar moved to 4th on the points table.

Dussen kept Lahore in the game till the last over but little support from the other end meant that Peshawar were always ahead in the game.

With 18 needed off the last over, Peshawar’s Paul Walter conceded only nine runs to ensure Lahore remained winless in the ongoing edition with Dussen stuck at the other end at 104 off 52 which featured seven 4s and six 6s.

Hero from the previous game, Lahore’s opening batter Sahibzada Farhan’s stay at the crease lasted for only two overs as he lost his wicket to Afghanistan’s Naveenul Haq, trying to slash him through the square region.

He was caught for 15 off 12 by Peshawar’s wicketkeeper batter Haseebullah Khan.

Fakhar Zaman’s torrid run of form with the bat continued as he struggled to time the ball throughout his innings and got bowled by England’s Luke Wood for a paltry 4 off 8.

The West Indian Shai Hope joined Dussen at the crease and together they put on 71 before Salman Irshad bowled full outside off, leading to a thick inside edge with the ball rattling the timber.

Lahore made some questionable decisions throughout the game and sent in the young Ahsan Hafeez and Jahandad Khan ahead of the veterans Sikandar Raza and Carlos Brathwaite, when the required run rate was touching nearly 13 runs per over.

And although Hafeez and Khan chipped in with little batting contributions, sending them ahead of power hitters Raza and Brathwaite meant that the latter pair had an insurmountable target to achieve.

Earlier in the night, Peshawar’s captain and Pakistan’s star batter Babar Azam and the young attacking opening batter Saim Ayub set the foundation for a huge total, scoring 136 runs for the opening wicket. Babar scored a sensible 48 off 36 meanwhile Ayub smashed a 55-ball 88 runs which featured eight 4s and four 6s after a cautious start.

Babar was replaced by the West Indian Rovman Powell who smacked the bowlers all around the park and scored 46 off 20 at a strike rate of 230.

For Lahore, the only notable performance with the ball came from their captain Shaheen Shah Afridi who picked up three wickets for 33 runs in his 4-over spell.

Lahore were forced to play Mohammad Imran in place of the injured Haris Rauf. Imran though soon found himself at the mercy of Peshawar’s batters who took him to cleaners all over the ground.

Lahore used seven bowling options in all, none of whom, barring Afridi, could stop the assault by Peshawar’s batters.

Ayub was adjudged the player of the match for his match-winning knock of 88 runs.

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